Do not take part in the sins of others; keep yourself pure.
The sins of some people are conspicuous, going before them into judgment, but the sins of others appear later.
So also good works are conspicuous, and even those that are not cannot remain hidden.
1 Timothy 5:22; 24&25 (ESV)
A wise person understands that wisdom must be pursued, and the best source is always God’s Word (see Proverbs 2:1-5). Psalm 119:24 says, Your testimonies are my delight; they are my counselors. Scripture is the plum line to which all other perspectives are compared and found to be truthful and right—or false and wrong.
God’s Word teaches that no one is omniscient so, therefore, it is wise to consult trusted confidants. Proverbs 15:22 says, Without counsel plans fail, but with many advisors they succeed. The Hebrew word translated “consultation” refers to private counsel that is not made public—to arm a wise person with resources to navigate the difficult problems and complexities of life.
The wise person seeks guidance from a variety of advisors—as wide a circle as is practical. My husband, Darryl, does not hesitate to seek wisdom from many counselors. He believes he has not really heard another person until he can repeat back their view to their own satisfaction. That is because he knows the wisest course of action is often best distilled from the strongest insights cancelling out the weakest ones. This process allows God to direct plans in new creative ways.
Although too much advice or over-analysis can hinder the planning process, more advice is usually better than less. So, after gathering plenty of advice and proceeding with a thoughtful course of action, a humble individual keeps seeking the confirmation of the Holy Spirit.
In contrast, a fool withdraws from community—therefore, he forfeits receiving the kind of affirmation and accountability that keeps his life on track. A fool does not seek advice because he wants to be left alone to pursue his own selfish ambitions. A fool makes decisions carelessly—often in great haste.
THE WISE MAN
Engages with Community
Seeks Advice from Others
Carefully Weighs Decisions
THE FOOLISH MAN
Withdraws from Community
Pursues Selfish Ambitions
Carelessly Rushes Decisions
Proverbs 13:20 says, Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm. Are you becoming wise? Are you taking advantage of the gift of community?